The integration project run by the New German Media Professionals (Neue deutsche Medienmacher), supported by Adobe Systems and Deutsche Telekom, receives the coveted award in the Corporate Responsibility category.
All newcomers in Germany need information. The digital Handbook Germany www.handbookgermany.de provides information for refugees and newcomers in Germany. The Handbook is now available in seven languages: apart from German, English, Arabic, Farsi, it now includes Pashto (Afghanistan/Pakistan), French (western and central Africa) and Turkish. 87 percent of the asylum seekers from the top ten countries of origin in 2017 thus receive reliable information on how to get on in Germany in their mother tongues or common official/commercial languages of their home countries. All information on handbookgermany.de is continuously supplemented and updated.
Initial central information hub
handbookgermany.de, which went online in February 2017, thus plugs the information gap: Existing information and support programs are brought together on the central online hub, edited to meet the needs of specific target groups and distributed successfully. The New German Media Professionals, a network of journalists, therefore set up a multilingual editorial team comprising refugee journalists over a year ago. The team ensures that people looking for guidance receive reliable information on legal issues, education, work, housing and living in Germany.
handbookgermany.de is the further evolution of the www.refugees.telekom.de portal. In 2015, Deutsche Telekom set up the portal to help refugees with initial information for the arrival phase, in addition to free Wi-Fi in preliminary reception centers. More than two million website visits to date and the increasing distribution figures in social media are testament to the project’s success. The explanatory videos have been viewed 1.5 million times on Facebook alone. The handbook maintains direct contact with refugees: every week the editorial team receives around 400 questions, comments and e-mails.
Deutsche Telekom and Adobe Systems support handbookgermany.de
“Our aim from the outset was to further develop the portal. The success of handbookgermany.de clearly demonstrates the potential of digitalization in an increasingly diverse society and how important specifically addressing target groups in a way that fosters trust is in promoting integration,” says Birgit Klesper, Senior Vice President Group Corporate Responsibility Deutsche Telekom: “That’s why we’re delighted to support Handbook Germany as part of our commitment to providing help for refugees and continuing the fruitful collaboration with the New German Media Professionals and Adobe Systems.” The Deutsche Telekom subsidiary T-Systems Multimedia Solutions provides technical support for the platform.
The software vendor Adobe Systems has also contributed to the success of the handbookgermany.de project from the outset with its Digital Government solution, among other things: “Providing information that is relevant and personalized for such a diverse target group as we have from handbookgermany.de proves challenging. We adopt agile solution concepts to provide the underlying technology. These concepts provide fast access for users while identifying their personal needs, such as the right language settings to deliver the help they need.”, explains Dr. Thomas Meyer, Director Business Development Central Europe at Adobe Systems: “In this way, digital technology becomes an integration engine.”
An array of awards
Back in April 2018 handbookgermany.de also received the Digital Award in Bronze from the German Association for the Digital Economy (BVDW) in the Content Platforms/ Digital Magazines category. And at the Film Festival Cologne, initiated by the State Chancellery of North Rhine-Westphalia, handbookgermany.de took first prize in the “Media and Migration” category in 2017.